"I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day. And I believe in miracles."
~ Audrey Hepburn


Alfajores 101

In my last post I mentioned that my trip to Buenos Aires resulted in a freakish obsession with alfajores.
As if writing that blog post wasn't enough to make me miss my favorite treat from South America, 
I happened to speak to somebody later that week at a BBQ who had been to Argentina, tasted alfajores, 
and shared my love for them! That did it. I went home, researched recipes for a few days, and set out
to recreate those little shortbread/caramel/coconut gems. Here are my results:

Alfajores de maizena by Pip in the City 
All-purpose flour 1 2/3 cups 
 Maizena (corn starch) 2 1/2 cups 
 Baking soda 1/2 teaspoon 
 Baking powder 2 teaspoons 
 Butter 1 cup 
Sugar 3/4 cup 
 Egg yolks 3 
 Cognac or whiskey 1 teaspoon 
 Vanilla extract 1 teaspoon 
 Grated lemon zest 1-2 teaspoons


1. Sift dry ingredients together. 
2. Cream the butter with the sugar. Add the egg yolks, the vanilla extract, the cognac/whiskey, and the lemon zest. 
3. Add this cream to the dry ingredients, making a hole in the middle of the flour. Use a spoon to make a crumbly dough and be VERY careful not to overwork the dough or knead with your hands. When you see that the dough is cohesive enough, make a ball with your hands pressing the different pieces together. 
4. Cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for 30-60 minutes (30 is usually enough if you are in a hurry).


5. Roll out the dough, carefully flouring the counter until it gets around 1/2 a centimeter thick. Cut with a round cutter and continue to join the scraps again and again until you´ve used all the dough. 
 6. Place in a clean cookie sheet and bake for around 17-20 minutes in a 180°C-350°F oven. Please check often after the first 10 minutes. The dough should be white, not golden (it can appear undone, but it is not! And if you wait too much you will end up with a dry alfajor). 
 7. Quickly remove the cookies and place them in a rack (otherwise they can get burned and will get stuck to the cookie sheet).

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8. Once the cookies are cold, put a spoonful of dulce de leche in the middle of one cookie and carefully place another cookie on top. Press the top cookie gently to get the dulce de leche to the corners of the alfajor. 
9. Roll the sides on some shredded coconut for a classic look. If you are feeling fancy, dip the alfajores in some chocolate ganache!!

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I was overjoyed with the result. I thought it would be funny to take a picture of myself taking
the first bite, but I was nowhere near prepared for the ecstasy I was about to experience. 
That picture below (left) is not staged or fake HAHAHA. That is what you call pure bliss. 

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I was afraid that my opinion of the cookies was biased and was really nervous when I handed them
out to my cousins and aunts. The chorus of moans and "Oh my Gods" reassured me that they
turned out every bit as delicious as I thought. Many thanks to Pip for a wonderful recipe. 

Let me know if you make these! You won't regret it!


Anonymous said...

They have cajeta! Oh man cajeta is better than regular caramel. I must try these :) <3 you


Cookie said...

Wow that is simply amazing!
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